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Us 29, Afghanistan 14, Rick Scott 14, Sonia Sotomayor 13, United States 10, Iraq 9, Sotomayor 8, Rick 3, Robert Gibbs 3, Nancy Pelosi 3, Harry Reid 2, Geico 2, Mom 2, Rick Sanchez 2, Swasticas 2, Anthony 2, Anthony Lightfoot 2, Obama 2, America 2, Al Franken 2,
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  CNN    CNN Newsroom    News/Business. New.  

    August 6, 2009
    3:00 - 4:00pm EDT  

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this is the cold cash in the freezer and now the video. congressman william jefferson taking the bribe. you will see it. and the tattered flag and the father who would not take it down. >> they keep knocking on my door and demanding it to be removed. >> today is the day it changes on your national conversation for thursday, august 6th, 2009. hello, again, everybody. i'm rick sanchez with the next generation of news. this is a conversation, it is not a speech. as always, it is your turn to get involved. as we begin this forecast, there is news being made in washington, d.c. some would say it is all but a for malt that smality that she
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going to be confirmed. the vote is now being taken there on the senate floor. as you can see, we will keep a little box up for you as the votes come in. we will tally them. we have a confirmation of sonia sotomayor, which by the way, everything seems to lead in that direction unless there is a huge surprise. we will bring it to you and we'll tell you what possible surprises there may have been, either from democrats or from democrats, because it is not official until they actually cast their ballots. we will be following the sotomayor confirmation. in the meantime, big story that's being followed is the health care debate, the screaming, et cetera. well, guess what? it's getting uglier. house speaker, nancy pelosi, now suggestion the loud opponents of health care reform are not legitimate. this is what nancy pelosi came out and said, she goes on to say some are wearing swasticas. we have been unable to confirm
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someone wearing swasticas. we have called her office to have her explain what she meant and where she had seen them. when she does, we will share that with you. again, these town hall meetings, central to the democrats plan to sell health care reform, are being assailed by angry opponents who are drowning out speakers and shutting down the debate. >> nancy pelosi, harry reid and the rest of the people in congress and the senate, are they going to be willing to be on the same plan they are asking us to be on? >> in fact, several democratic members of congress now have canceled their town hall meetings, we learned, at least one, represent brad miller of
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north carolina, is saying, he has gotten a death threat. that's what he is saying. now, if you were with us here tuesday, when we first started following the story, you heard a charge by a congressman, congressman lloyd doggett who joined me here. on video, you see him being chased from this forum on to a parking lot. he told us this isn't some ground swell of grass roots rage. he says it is being coordinated and scripted. >> i think the script is des sem nated through the republican party and websites that they are going through and through some of the private organizations that are helping orchestrate all this. >> now, i should say that there does seem to be some evidence that the congressman may be right at least in some part. i, and my staff, have watched video after video of some of
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these meetings. we hear many of the same slogans repeated again and again and again. as a matter of fact, here are some. >> it is a direct assault on our personal liberties, our personal freedom, our personal privacy. you need to open it up to the free markets and get the government the hell out of it. >> there you go. some of the themes, social looizlooisocialized medicine, u than asia and, quote, unquote, read the bill. there are instances where you hear people soupd like they are reading from the same script. that's what the white house is now saying as well. they are even taking it a step forward. they are accusing a specific conservative health care executive of ork kes straighting these protests. that's why we have invited that executive, rick scott, to join us here and he is going to be
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here in just a moment to try and defend himself. first, let me bring in eric boehler of the liberal media watchdog group, "media matters." good afternoon. >> yes. >> is this thing orchestrated? >> there is nothing wrong with activism and rallies people for a point of view and having your views heard. it is ironic, here we have a town hall forum and the entire premise is to shut down any conversation, any debate, yell and heckle and scream and sort of chase congressman to their cars. that being orchestrated and it has nothing to do with health care. it is tapping into, you knee, sort of a radical minority which has a deep-seeded hatred of barack obama. >> look historically, it is the united states. isn't this what our descendants did who founded this country in boston? >> this is not the new england
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town hall meeting. >> why not? >> because the whole point is not to get up as have as many loudmouths in one room and scream and yell and shout and insult congressmen. the point of town hall meetings, as we've seen, is to have an actual civil conversation and have different points of view. this idea that you are going to have these minimobs run the congressman out of town, what's that have to do with democracy and any sort of public debate. the irony is these town hall forums are supposed to be for debate and the right wing has decided, we will use it to put the kibosh on any actual debate. no one is talking about health care. no one is talking about what's in the bill and what the country is going to do going forward. >> there is a lot of slogan earring. you mentioned right wing. to be fair. aside from the conservative media, they are going to push back on anything that obama
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suggestion, no matter what. now, the white house is involved in this. robert gibbs is saying this thing is being orchestrated by a big buck health care executive. he didn't name that executive but he said enough about him that we thought he was talking about our next guest, which is rick scott. there is rick scott's picture, by the way. >> rick scott is in the business to make money off people who are uninsured or underinsured. his whole business model in terms of his walk-in clinics is to have a huge population that is underinsured or has no insurance. he has a horse in this race and he created con sieservatives fo patient's rights. they have been trying to take credit for the town forums and the minimobs. of course, the health care industry wants to see no health care reform enacted. you can't really -- i know you
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want to set aside the right wing media but it is impossible. >> i am looking at his website. if you go to his website, he has been interviewed on some of those media that you and i don't need to mention. every one of our viewers knows who they are. go ahead. i'm looking at his web site right now. there, he lists alaska and tells people when the town hall meetings will be. if you go through this, there are all the town hall meetings for everyone to see. i am going to ask him in a minute. this is something he is proud of. he is an american and telling other americans what they can do. he has videos here showing what they have done so far. what do you make of that? >> that's great. a lot of liberal groups are letting everyone know when these town hall meetings are because they want representation too. he is running these $1 million
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ad campaigns. he hired a publicist and is spending millions of dollars on misinformation. >> where is the money coming from? >> he got a bunch of money when he was running columbia health care in the '90s. >> which was an empire. >> which pled guilty and had to pay a $1.7 billion fine for defrauding the government. his company system mackicily overbuild the government on medicare and now he is warning people if the government gets involved in health care, it is going to cost too much. there is a little double standard there. look. the whole movement is built around scare tactics, the right wing media is absolutely -- the people are nervous and angry. they are literally being told the federal government is going to be in the business of celebri selectively choosing which old people to kill. >> scott is going to be coming up in a little bit.
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we thank you for that perspective. as usual, my best to you. come on back. >> there it is once again. here is the question. who is behind these angry town hall demonstrations? some on the left have been pointing to rick scott specifically. in fact, it certainly appears like the white house is pointing to rick scott specifically. who is he? is he responsible? well, rick scott is good enough to join us. he is going to be here and he is going to answer our questions and what appears to be the white house' accusations as well. you will see this exclusive interview with him in just a little bit since he has been named by the white house and speaking of anger, have you heard this one? several dallas police officers are being suspended for having a real good time with some racist -- i mean, dirty racist e-mails aimed at the president of the united states. i'll tell you what they got and what they did. stay with us.
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>> let's listen in with what is going on with the confirmation proceedings of sonia sotomayor. the vote is on. they are wrapping up the vote. let's pick that up, raj. >> mr. bitter? no. mr. voinovich, aye. mr. warner, aye. mr. web? mr. webb, aye. mr. white house, aye. mr. wicker, no. mr. widen, aye. mr. bennett of utah, no. mr. bye, no.
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mrs. hutchinson, no. mr. inhauf, no. mr. beckett, aye. >> there is that famous up or down vote that we had told you or that the republicans had promised sonia sotomayor. you are hearing it now. we are staying with it for a few moments to see if they have an actual confirmation. that's file video you are looking at on the right of sonia sotomayor. by all indications, she will be confirmed. what we are looking for here is -- what's the vote up to andy? tell me that number. have they passed 60. i'm being told by my executive
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producer while we are doing that segment, she was, in fact, all but confirmed. they have passed the magic number of 60. it would be difficult for her not to be confirmed given who is controlling the senate. regardless of that, there could be as many as three, four, maybe five republicans who cross over and actually vote for sotomayor. the biggest resistance that they are getting at this point, at least the last reports that we read, was that the nra was threatening to actually reduce their rank if they did vote for her, because they are not sure that she is going to be pro gun. so that may have been something that was hanging over their heads. obviously arks lot of news that still has to be gotten out on this story. we are following it for you. it does appear that sonia sotomayor has been confirmed. as you just heard -- want to listen in a little more? see if we can catch some names.
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all right. i was just told that -- >> are there any senators wishing to vote or change their vote? >> al franken, from the great state of minnesota. >> i would like to make a statement about the galleries. you are reminded that expressions of approval or disapproval are not permitted. on this vote, the yeas are 68 and the nays are 31. the nomination of sonia sotomayor of new york to be an associate justice of the supreme court of the united states is confirmed. under the previous order, the motion to reconsider is considered laid upon the table. the president will be
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immediately notified of the senate's action and the senate will resume legislative session. >> mr. president. >> the senator, the majority leader. >> i suggest the absence of corum. >> harry reid rising now. >> so there you have it. what is really history in the making for the first time, the united states of america, it does appear. of course, she still has to be sworn in. has a confirmed supreme court justice, who is not only a woman, which has been a minority in the past, but also a hispanic woman. a proud latina is the term she has used in the past when describing herself. a term that from time to time gave her some problem during her confirmation proceedings. nonetheless, i think, as i saw the vote there and correct me if i'm wrong, i saw 68-31.
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68-31 is correct. thank you. we understand as well that the president, president obama is going to make some comments shortly, as a result of this confirmation vote. as soon as that comes up, we will bring it to you as well. st stay with us. rick scott will be joining us in a few minutes. >> rick scott was all but named by robert gibbs as the person that was orchestrating some of these protests. he joins us. we will see this in just a moment. stay with us.
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welcome back. here is the breaking news we have been following. we saw it moments ago as the vote was taken and the vote was announced. we saw it. al franken, seonia sotomayor ha been confirmed by a vote of
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68-31. that 68 is a pretty big number. it would mean several republicans would have voted for her. by the way, they were expected to vote for her. i'm not sure what the number is here. something like nine, i'm being told. we'll track that down for you and let you know. again, sonia sotomayor, confirmed by the senate, still, she has to be sworn in before she officially becomes the next supreme court justice, one would think. we'll be on it. also this. i want to take you back now to our lead story. the chaos engulfing the health care forums that we have been telling you about. these town hall meetings are a corner stone of a plan by democrats to try and sell reform to the public over the upcoming congressional recess. many planned events are being canceled. you heard the accusations aired right here. the disruptions are planned. they are funded. they are scripted. as part of a high stakes corporate and political effort to kill reform of the nation's health care system.
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that's what eric of media matters was pointing out. that's what in some measure as well the white house is saying. it's a serious accusation. joining us now from new york. a man who finds himself in the middle of all of this. he is the former health care executive, rick scott, chairman of the group, conservative for patient's rights. good afternoon, mr. scott. >> how are you doing? >> i'm fine. >> i want you to listen to what robert gibbs said just two days ago while we were airing it here at 3:00 on cnn. i got the sense that he was talking about you. let's listen to it together, first. >> i think what you've seen is they have -- they have bragged about manufacturing to some degree that anger to, i think you've got somebody who is very involved, a leader of that group, that's very involved in the status quo, the ceo that used to run a health care company that was fined by the federal government $1.7 billion
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for fraud. i think that's a lot of what you need to know about the motives of that group. >> it sure looks to me like he is pointing his finger right at you. do you think he is? >> i think he was. >> yeah, yeah. do you take credit -- i was just having a conversation with eric bolhert and said, this guy has this website. i will show it to the viewers again. there is your website. we take it all the way to the very top. people can see it. it is cpr, conservatives for patient's rights. there, you tell people where they can go, to these town hall meetings. you tell them what they can do. you show them videos of what's been done so far. some people have used the word orchestrated. i'm not sure what word you would use. do you take credit for making sure this is going on? >> it would be nice to, right? i believe that people ought to show up to these meetings and be nicer about it. they ought to show up and tell them what they think. i think they ought to show up whatever side you are on. you ought to let people know.
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we are going through a significant debate about what ought to happen in health care. show up and tell them what you think. >> let's be fair about this. you are not trying to get everybody to go. you are trying to begin gin up people who are going ton object your side. you have a lot to gain. >> i clearly believe that government-run health care will be bad for you as a patient and a taxpayer and bad for our country. most important, it would be bad for you as a patient. would i rather people show up that care about the debate as i believe? >> absolutely. i say, show up, read the bill. >> let's talk about this. the accusation that the white house was essentially making, one that you haven't challenged yet to my knowledge. maybe you will here now. columbia hospital corporation, which you founded, which later became hca, which made you, from my understanding, incredibly wealthy, was charged with
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defrauding the government for more than a decade and had to pay a record fine of $1.7 billion. i mean, some would argue and it would be hard to say they are wrong, that you would be the poster child for everything that's wrong with the greed that has hurt our current health care system. people would ask, why should they listen to you? >> you don't have to listen to me. you should look at the facts. you should read the back. if you want to look at columbia aca. you should look at what we accomplished. health care costs in '88 were 16% a year inflation. when i got out in 1997, they were less than 1%. we had the highest patient satisfaction and the best income. if you were in the hospital business in the late '80s, you went through medicare investigations. president clinton said, if you made a mistake in your filing, that was called fraud. >> but $1.7 billion? that's the highest ever paid in the history of the united states
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that your company ended up having to pay pay as a result of what you did by defrauding the government? >> no one went to jail. i was never accused of anything. let's think about it $1.7 billion sounds like a lot. we had had 343 hospitals, 150 surgery centers, over 100,000 patients a day. now, let's look at the industry. cleveland clinic paid big fines. mayo paid big fines. yale paid big fines. were they as big? no. how many hospitals did they have? >> you are the guy that is sitting here telling us we can't allow the government to do this because it won't work and they might take over or do some things that are wrong. how much more wrong can you be than what you just said? not only has your company screwed up and you just admitted to you. you are saying, look at all the other companies, they did the same thing. >> no, i don't believe that at all. >> it doesn't sound look a sterling system that we have, does it?
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>> that's right. you ought to fix the system. you ought to say, why do we have 135,000 pages of medicare regulations that people work their tail off. the hospital industry to this day works its tail off to do the right thing. don't believe me. read the bill. do you want your taxes to go up? do you want a uk system? do you want canadian system? >> some poem would answer, yes, they do. in canada, they pay one half of what americans pay for health care. most of them are proud as pudding of their health care system. they write me here every day. i can't believe americans don't like our system. we think it is absolutely fantastic. by the way, let me ask you a question. your company was accused of something called upcoding. that means they treated patients for something minor but charged the government, the taxpayers for something expensive. that was the accusation. >> rick, i have no idea. i never did anything with medicare. i started a company.
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i bought hospitals. i bought hca. i bought all the humana hospitals. >> let me ask you this one then. here is the other accusation as i was reading about what some people say your company may have been involved in. your company would go into a region. they would buy up all the hospitals and then they would shut them all down except for one to make that one hospital very powerful. i guess that's a good business plan. is that good for patients? >> absolutely. now, first off, that didn't happen. we did buy 20 hospitals that we consolidated. it goes on every day, not every day. it goes on throughout the country, all the time. it has happened before i got in the business and afterwards. here is the reason why you want that to happen as a patient. you want to make sure that your hospital has the best equipment. so if you have a hospital that has more patients and can afford the best equipment, you want your hospital to be successful. they have the right equipment. they can hire the right employees. >> i am reading a report from
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the pose tton currier. they said your hospitals had consistent dirty facilities. the gloves they were used to operate with were so cheap they had to break. nurses are say they had to treat so many patients they weren't able to handle the demand? >> how could i have the lowest cost to a patient? i did. you look at the studies. i had better satisfaction in the industry by a long shot and i had better outcome. we measured everything. who put that out? no different than what's happening today. unions put it these out because they want to unionize your hospitals. if you look at the fact, lower prices, better outcomes and better patient satisfactions. >> you are not saying all of these things are true? you are copping to the fact that your company had to pay $1.7 billion, which is still the most ever paid in the history of the united states? >> after i left, the company paid those fines. the company did not pay those fines when i was there. >> you are playing with the facts, sir. let me tell you what happened. >> no. >> these charges were charged
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against your company while you were there, while you were the boss and it happened over a period of ten years. yes, they were paid after you left but they accused them of happening while you were leading the company? you know that. >> and, rick, it was covering time frames before i bought those companies and it covered time frames afterwards. >> i guess the point i am making, though, is look, people are going to look at you as the guy who is telling all these people out there, which is your right as an american and good for them for wanting to get out there and have a point of view and be passionate about their money and their tax money, some people are going to look at your record and some of the things that you and i just talked about and say, this is the guy who is leading this charge. is he the one that we should be listening to? not exactly a perfect past when it comes to what's right for taxpayers and patients? >> absolutely. if you care about patient satisfaction and cost and quality, you absolutely do. >> all right. rick scott, you know what, thank you, sir, for taking the heat
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and taking the questions. we appreciate having you on. >> thank you. >> rick scott there. we will continue to follow the latest on what's going on with the president of the united states. we understand he is going to be coming up shortly. we are told he is going to be coming up at 3:30 to talk about the sonia sotomayor question. we now know, in fact, that chief justice john roberts will be swearing her in saturday morning at 11:00 a.m. that information just now coming in to me. is this the president or somebody else? i can't tell. that monitor is too small for me. oh, yeah. that's what they do. they come up to the mike to check the sound levels to make sure that everybody in the media has a shot. let's do this. see if we can sneak in a break and we'll come right back. stay with us. and vitamin d...ium to support bone and breast health... while helping you hydrate. one a day women's 2o. refreshingly healthy.
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hot! hot! hot! time to check your air conditioning? come to meineke now and get a free ac system check. at meineke, you're always the driver. we are waiting for the president of the united states. you see the white house. the big news as we are following it right now. the breaking news is that sonia sotomayor has been confirmed by the senate. the vote was 68-31. everybody had a guess in this game as to how many republicans would vote for sonia sotomayor. most of the counts i saw weren't
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quite that high. it means a few more republicans than expected actually voted for president obama's choice to be the next supreme court justice. speaking of president obama, we understand that the president is going to be coming up any moment now to the podium there. he is going to make his first comments after this senate confirmation. as to what the process is now, that's pretty much it, except for saturday morning, we now understand. she will actually be sworn in. as her swearing in continues, we here at cnn will follow it. obviously, from beginning to end. more commentary. we will be joined by more guests as we await the president of the united states arrival. we do remember, we are going to be following several other stories for you today, including the very latest on what's going on with the health care debate. and that story we brought you yesterday about the man who said he wouldn't take down his tattered flag until his son came home. his son came home.
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he will be calling us and hopefully we will see the reunion between father and son, both veterans, both proud, both here. we will be right back.
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my son, before he left to go to iraq, he came and brought me the flag. he raised it up. at that time, i told him, i will not replace that flag until you come and you bring it down yourself. i made him a promise. i didn't realize that the flag would get in the condition that it is in right now. >> your son has done not one but two tours from iraq. i have been told by a little birdy after doing some research that your son has just arrived
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in the united states. is that right? >> yes. my son has done two tours in iraq and he is due to come in to fresno tomorrow at 8:30 in the morning. >> that's not the clip i would have picked. you should have seen the beginning of this interview. we let you know about this man, this louis haros he was flying a tattered, torn flag. we said, sir, why won't you take the flag down? then, he seemed to put all of us in our place, including his neighbors and everybody. he said, he loved his son. he is a veteran, by the way, from vietnam. he told his son, when you come back from your second tour of duty in iraq, i will take that flag down and not a moment sooner. suddenly, everybody had a love affair with this guy, because he was so real, so patriotic, loved his son, loved his couldn't interest i, loved his flag.
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guess what happened? as you just heard, his son is home. the two of them are going to be getting together with us. they are getting together an sharing some of their moments with us. look at all the comments by the way since yesterday when we did this story. it exploded. bad road. mr. haros appears to be a man who does the right thing because it is right, no the because it is popular. we need more men like this in our nation. steve says, my family flew the same flag every day. now, that ragged flag is in my office, a constant reminder of the love and support of my family and community. finally, ja says, i support this father in keeping his promise. i salute him. dan lothian standing by. i should let you know. we are going to be joining the son in a little bit. stand by. he just came back from iraq. he is on the phone and he wants to talk to us about his dad and his dad's flag and that
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controversy. the president of the united states is going to be speaking in about a minute and a half. dan lothian is there to stand up and tell us what he expects the president to say. >> reporter: i am here. the president should be addressing the nation shortly. this was something added to the schedule at the last minute, a chance for the president to comment on the confirmation of justice sotomayor. what's interesting, rick, is to take you back a little bit to last week when i approached the senior administration official to talk about the marking of the second 100 days in this administration. what's the one thing that stands out to you as a big achievement in this second 100 days. he immediately thought about it and then said, sotomayor. the confirmation had not yet happened. there were certainly all indications that she would be confirmed. this white house really believes that this was, a, an important choice that the president made
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for the supreme court and they are very pleased by what happened today. on the other hand, they would have loved to have seen this as a big bipartisan effort. there were some republicans that came on board for her confirmation. certainly not what they would have loved. here is the president coming out now to say some remarks. >> i am deeply gratified that the senate has voted to confirm judge sonia sotomayor as our nation's 111th supreme court justice. i want to thank the supreme court judiciary committee, senator leahy as well as senator sessions for giving judge sotomayor a thorough and civil hearing and i thank them for doing so in a timely manner so she can be fully prepared to take her seat when the court begins begin in september. the members of our supreme court
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are granted life tenure and charged with the vital task of applying principals that are necessary for our time. over the past ten weeks, members of the committee have discussed her fitness for this work. they scrutinized her work as a lit gator and a judge. they have gauged her respect for the proper role of each branch of our government, her commitment to faithfully apply the law to the facts at hand and the determination to protect our constitutional rights and freedoms. with this historic hope, the senate has affirmed that judge sotomayor has the intellect, the temperament, the history, the integrity and the independence of mind to ably serve on our nation's highest court. this is the a hole that trole t
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senate has played. a description of what happens every single day inside the courtroom. it's a promise that whether you are a mighty corporation or an ordinary american, you will receive a full and fair hearing. in the end, the outcome of your case will be determined by nothing more or less than the strength of your argument and the dictates of the law. these core american eye deals, justice, equality and opportunity are the very eye deals that have made just sotomayor's own journey possible. they are ideals she has fought for throughout her career. the eye deals the senate has held today in breaking yet another barrier in moving us yet another step closer to a more perfect union. like so many other as speths of th this nation, i am filled with pride in this achievement and great confident that judge soto minor will make an outstanding supreme court justice. this is a wonderful day for
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judge sotomayor and her family. it is a wonderful day for her and her family. >> are you happy with this? i'm very happy. >> you have the very first question after the president's speech about the confirmation of sotomayor, about the 68 votes. >> let me come back to you if we can on that question, itself. apparently, we have lost dan lothian. again shall the president just coming out of making his remarks about the fact that sonia sotomayor has been confirmed. the number is 68-31. by my count, a little higher number than most of the pundits have expected. especially after the comment by the nra earlier today that they would downgrade the status of some of the senators if they, in fact, voted for so tie mtomayor because of her gun record. we will stay with this story and
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take a quick break and be right back with a soldier who just rer returned from iraq who is going to explain to us his dad's attitude. we want to share it with you. stay with us. we will be right back.
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this week i promised i would focus on afghanistan an the country's mission there. i want to share with you the story of sergeant anthony lightfoot. his mother wanted me to tell her son's story. i have shown you part of it. so many of us have asked us to show this story again. you know what? okay, we will. in large measure because his mother is giving all of us the opportunity to see something this week that we have rarely been able to see over the last decade. here is a respectful look at the
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return of a soldier killed in action. there is an official military term for this process. this slow-motion removal of u.s. military caskets from an airplane. it is not a macho fighting term or a clever acronym. it is just two words, dignified transfer. it is not a performance or done for the benefit of cameras or a television audience. in fact, most dignified transfers happen without a camera anywhere near, middle of the night, in the rain, in the snow, honor guards, silent, rigid, strong, disciplined,
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dignified. lots of people in this country believe you shouldn't see video or pictures of these caskets when they arrive at dover air force base. that's a debate for another day. today, we can see them when and if the family of the fallen man or woman gives permission. the man inside that flag-draped coffin, buried today at arlington. his mother gave us permission to let you see this. she wants you to see this. >> i don't see why we can't share our loved ones to the world. some people may want it private but i want my son to be remembered. >> her son, her soldier, anthony lightfoot, two months and one day after his 20th birthday, he died, july 20th, in afghanistan. >> they told me that anthony had
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got hit by improvised explosives and then some rounds went off and then a grenade just shot through the vehicle. >> did they say he died instantly? >> i'm pretty sure he did die instantly. >> is that important to you? >> yes. i don't believe he suffered. he died instantly, because i was told he don't have his lower extremities. >> how often do you cry? >> i cry every now and then at night. i don't get much sleep. then, sometimes i be thinking i be hearing somebody saying, mom, but i don't say anything. >> his voice? >> yes. one night i thought i saw him sitting in the chair and i guess i was seeing things. i don't know. but, like i said, when his coffin came back, i saw a little puff of smoke saying, mom, i'll be all right, don't cry.
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>> a lot of people have been affected by that story. we want to thank lavonne for letting us come to her home and talk to us about that and share that moment with her. joining me now is afghanistan's ambassador to the united states. thanks for being with us, sir. what do you say to a mother who has just given your country her son's life? >> i am struggling to find the right words to say how grateful we are for this sacrifice. i am telling to the family that anthony and many others, who are putting their lives on line to make afghanistan the world and the united states a safer place for us and our children are true heroes. there will be no way for us to pay our gratitude for those putting their lives on line and leaving the comfort of their homes and family and mothers, fighting in afghanistan and dying for a cause of freedom and safety of afghanistan in the
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united states. >> i am sure parents hearing that message from you appreciate that, sir. is the war in afghanistan winnable. let me put for you? >> winning is to better the security institutions in afghanistan in a way that we will be able to ensure the safety and security of afghanistan ourselves. there will be no need for people like him to sacrifice their lives in afghanistan. and that objective is doable. despite the security challenges today, afghanistan is a lot more secure than the postsurge iraq. we will win this, but we will also remember forever those who have helped us to obtain this objective. >> unfortunately, the polls aren't showing that americans are too into this anymore. maybe because of the experience in iraq in particular. there's a new cnn opinion research poll that says 54% of americans now oppose the war in afghanistan. how do you convince them that
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this war will not be like iraq, which, for too many americans, polled and otherwise, has at times seemed like an endless kwaug mire? >> this war was never about iraq in the beginning. al qaeda attacked the united states from the bases in afghanistan. the afghan people, the international community, we were partners in getting rid of the taliban and al qaeda. therefore, if the attention and resources would have not been shifted from afghanistan, we would not have been in this situation. today with mcchrystal and military operations and renewed focus, we see the results very quickly. >> we see the elections are august 20th. we're looking forward to that date. we'll get you back as we get close to that, and we'll see if, in fact, things go as expected. good luck, sir. my best to you, and thanks for being with us. >> thank you very much. >> thank you. >>ly not replace that flag until you come and you bring it down
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yourselves. and i made him a promise. >> he did. love that guy. now that his son is home, it's a tad bit tattered, ugly flag, is it finally coming down? can it really be ugly, as om of his neighbors described it? and also, remember the after show. cnn.com/live at 4:00. no twittering today. guess what? twitter's down, totally down all over the world. down. bug. something. supports your health in 4 ways. it helps your natural cleansing process. helps lower cholesterol. promotes overall well-being. and provides a good source of natural fiber. try metamucil today, in capsules and powders.
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getting lots of comments, as you might imagine, about the news we've been following for
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you, our conversation about sonia sotomayor, my interview with rick scott, and obviously the story we've been following about the father who won't take his flag down until his son comes home. on the scotty interview, nikki wrote, i bet rick scott now knows what it's like to get tased. kind of interesting comment on that. now let's go to facebook on the right can if we can. robert, see me pointing right over there, lisa peterson says, "that was a lovely story. bless the hearts of that father and son." "this is awesome, chilling, heartwarming story. thanks, rick." "my hat goes off for that family. they've been through most can imagine. more people to need to protect flag." david says, "good lesson in holding your opinion until you know all the facts." i guess it is a lesson for all of us. we're going to be right back. when that man who said he
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wouldn't take his flag down until his son came home, well, his son's home. guess who's joining us. helping people save money on car insurance. gecko: aw thank you, sir. boss: but i think there are a few other things you can say about what a reliable company geico is. gecko: right. uh, well maybe how geico's the third-largest car insurance company in america? nice tidbit there. boss: exactly. and i've been thinking, looking a bit more businesslike might help too. gecko: oh my. uhhh, no it's, what's, what's the word... vogeico. 15 minutes could save you 15 percent or more on car insurance. i think i'll go with the preferred package.
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welcome back. i'm rick sanchez. what i'm about to show you thrills me to the bone because every once in a while a story comes around that tings. corporal paul haros returns today. two tours of duty in iraq. his father, louis, a vietnam veteran, who got grief from some of his neighbors for flying a tattered flag, the stars and stripes, a flag he promised his son he would not take down until his son came home from that second tour of duty alive. you, our viewers, responded in mass when we talked to louis yesterday. some said he should take that thing down. but then when you heard his stories, you changed your minds. he's good enough to join us once again. louis, are you there, sir? >> yes, i am. >> good to talk to you. it's amazing, but yesterday there were so many people critical of you, and after they heard your story on tv, man, i got to tell you, sir, if i got ten, i got 10,000 e-mails,
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letter, tweets, comments, everything you could possibly imagine from people saying they love what you had to say. how does that make you feel? >> it makes me feel proud to have stayed my ground. >> you sure did. your son came home today, didn't he? >> yes, he did, and he brought the flag down and put a new one up. >> how is young corporal paul? >> well, he lost a lot of weight and we're trying to fatten him up again. >> is that your wife i hear in the background laughing? >> yeah. she's the one that's cooking up some beans right now. >> good for her! i imagine he had something to say about his dad being on national television and becoming a bit of a celebrity with people from all over the world e-mailing and commenting on him. what did he say? >> he says, man, he didn't expect this kind of homecoming. >> is he embarrassed? >> well, he was kind of set back, ye